Starting and ending the meet with record-breaking relay performances, Loyola High School emerged from the waters of the Riverside Aquatics Center holding the CIF-Southern Section Division 1 Swimming championship trophy May 4.

It was the Cubs’ first title since 2016 and came after two years of second-place finishes in the team event. The Cubs also won the D-1 crown in 2011, and have finished in the top two in nine of the last 13 CIF-SS championships.

Loyola faced pressure from Santa Margarita throughout the meet, but finally pulled away to win with 317 points to the Eagles’ 274. Others placing in the team standings were Notre Dame/Sherman Oaks, 78 points (13th); Crespi, 63 (15th); Servite 37 (20th); J.Serra 31 (23rd); St Francis 13 (31st), and Alemany 3 (37th).

The Cubs’ 200 Medley Relay team of seniors Mark McCrary, James Lee, Connor Lee and Emmett Pernecky set a meet record of 1:29.80 in the day’s first race, breaking the old mark of 1:30.1 (University, 2014). In the final race, the Cubs’ 400 Relay team of McCrary, Connor Lee, Pernecky and freshman William Kim broke its own mark set in the preliminaries with a time of 2:59.65.

Connor Lee also won the 50 Free and 100 Fly, the former by .18 seconds over Servite senior Christian Martinez. Notre Dame senior Dominic Margarino won the 500 Free.

Also scoring points for their teams in the finals (first through ninth) or consolation finals (10th through 18th) were:

  • Loyola: seniors Nicholas Turrill and Carson Kranz, juniors Nolan Wang and Riley Griffis, and sophomores Taz Kanjanakaset and Jude DiStefano.
  • Santa Margarita: seniors Kevin Tu, Noah Brune, Alexander Ness, Jack Forsythe and Yurian Quinones, and sophomores Alexandru Ispas, Rui Huang and Lucas Morales-Osterga.
  • Notre Dame: junior Keane Alejandro, sophomore Evan Yoo and freshman Zachary Tamusaitis.
  • Crespi: senior Jack Gaines, juniors Zac Van Zandt (second in the 100 and 200 Free events), John Serino and Sasha Zaytsev and sophomore Sammy Negev.
  • J.Serra: seniors Nathanial Kirk and JP Kraus, and juniors Samuel Chan and Kenneth Woodsum.
  • St. Francis: juniors Michael Smith, Christopher Bruce and Ethan Gray, and senior John Balog.
  • Alemany: senior Charles Courrieu.

Mike Nelson is the former editor of The Tidings (predecessor of Angelus News). 

Start your day with Always Forward, our award-winning e-newsletter. Get this smart, handpicked selection of the day’s top news, analysis, and opinion, delivered to your inbox. Sign up absolutely free today!